Background Briefing: September 9, 2018


Kavanaugh Should Be Impeached for Lying to the Senate

We begin with the call to not just reject the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, but to impeach him for lying to the Senate Judiciary Committee in last week’s hearings. Lisa Graves, Co-director of Documented who was Chief Counsel for Nominations on the Senate Judiciary Committee and wrote the documents which were stolen by GOP Senate aide Manual Miranda, joins us to discuss how Kavanaugh lied under oath in his 2004 and 2006 confirmation hearings about whether he had received stolen information from Miranda, and did so again when questioned last week by Senator Leahy. After having zealously pursued perjury charges against Bill Clinton in a civil case for lying about an extra-marital affair to have a president impeached, Lisa Graves argues that Kavanaugh should be held to his own standard and be impeached for doing something far more egregious.


A President Pence Would Not Be Worse Than Trump

Then, with rumors swirling that Vice President Pence, who alone can initiate the 25th Amendment to remove Trump for office, could be the author of the anonymous op-ed revealing a dangerous and dysfunctional presidency, we look into whether a President Pence would be worse than the current occupant of the Oval officeNeil J. Young, a research scholar at George Mason University and author of “We Gather Together: The Religious Right and the Problem of Interfaith Politics”, joins us to discuss his article at The Huffington Post, “No, President Mike Pence Would Not Be Worse Than Trump”.


A Possible Path for Democrats to Take the Senate

Then we speak with Matt Anglewho directs the Texas Democratic Trust and the Lone Star Project, about remarks made by the White House’s Federal Budget Director Mick Mulvaney that the Democrat’s Beto O’Rourke could win Ted Cruz’s senate seat in Texas. We examine the narrow but possible path the Democrats have in taking back the senate in November.


The Trump Administration’s Ill-Considered Coup Plotting Against Venezuela

Then finally, we assess the blowback from revelations in The New York Times that the Trump Administration discussed coup plans against Venezuela’s President Maduro with rebel Venezuelan Military officers, one of whom is under U.S. sanctions for corruption. Javier Corrales, a Professor of Political Science at Amherst College and author of “Dragon in the Tropics: Hugo Chavez and the Political Economy of Revolution in Venezuela”, joins us.